Pak­istan HC al­lowed travel for Pak, In­dia T20 clash

The Pak Banker - - NATIONAL -

KOLKATA: Pak­istan High Com­mis­sioner in New Delhi Ab­dul Ba­sit was granted a visa to travel to Kolkata for a World T20 stand off be­tween Pak­istan and In­dia sched­uled for March 19, ANI re­ported. The news agency quoted Ba­sit say­ing, "I'm glad to be here but some­what sad that my col­leagues who wanted to come could not come."

Ba­sit was among five Pak­istani di­plo­mats who were ear­lier barred from trav­el­ling to Kolkata for the cricket match. It is un­clear whether the other di­plo­mats were al­lowed to travel for the match or not. A to­tal of 17 ap­pli­ca­tions were sub­mit­ted by di­plo­mats and of­fi­cials, in­clud­ing the Pak­istani High Com­mis­sioner, but only one diplo­mat had been al­lowed to watch the Pak­istan-Bangladesh match on Wed­nes­day, a spokesman for the Pak­istan High Com­mis­sion in New Delhi, Man­zoor Ali Me­mon had said.

"Even that diplo­mat was un­able to watch the match, as it is not pos­si­ble to reach Kolkata in such a short time," he said. Fol­low­ing the in­ci­dent, Pak­istan lodged a strong protest with the Deputy High Com­mis­sioner of In­dia J.P. Singh. In­dian diplo­mat had as­sured of­fi­cials that Pak­istan's re­ac­tion would be con­veyed to In­dian au­thor­i­ties in New Delhi. The match be­tween Pak­istan and In­dia, which was first sched­uled at Dharam­sala, was moved to Kolkata af­ter se­cu­rity con­cerns. The Pak­istan govern­ment then sought a "pub­lic guar­an­tee" of se­cu­rity from In­dian au­thor­i­ties be­fore it sent play­ers over for the in­ter­na­tional event. The next day, Ma­mata Ban­er­jee, chief min­is­ter of West Ben­gal, as­sured 'fool­proof se­cu­rity' to the Pak­istan team for its match against In­dia in writ­ing. The Pak­istani team ar­rived in In­dia on Satur­day evening amid tight se­cu­rity to take part in the World T20 se­ries and will face off against the In­dian cricket team in one of the most awaited games of the tour­na­ment at Eden Gar­dens on March 19.

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